Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I'm Still Here


I promise, I'm not dead.

I know I missed Manna Monday, but next week I should be back on track.

But....This last week has been a transition period for me.

These next 9 months are my last before I am completely done with my masters. However, this is the beginning of this particular semester. And as all of you know, the start of a new semester is always hectic and annoying.

SO....if you promise to stick it out with me, I know that soon I will have amazing stories for you again!

In the mean time?

I figured I would just leave you with some pics of my dogs because they are cute and in the midst of the stress? They make me happy with their stress-free lives.

Just all wags and kisses and playing.

They definitely remind me to not take life too seriously!

So here they are in all of their glory:

Nala (our puppy) acting like she is a big baby.

Nala also thinks she is a human and therefore sits on the couch like a child.
Nala's favorite past time is sleeping. On her pillow. All. Day. Long. She is extremely lazy.
Nala's other favorite pasttime is eating. Eating what? Anything. She's not picky. It could be dirt, food, hair, garbage, it is all great. Apparently? I am missing out on the greatness of these fine delicacies.

Here is Nariz as a puppy. Even then, we could tell she would be extremely ornery.

Here she is all grown up. That stuff on the floor? Yea. Her doing. Also? Those teeth you see are permanently sticking out because she has the worst underbite ever. Therefore, she always looks like she is snarling at you.

Although this pic is blurry, it accurately depicts her attitude: Lounging because she thinks she is queen. Of the world.

Nariz's favorite thing in the world is a tennis ball. She will play until she drops dead. Here she is looking like she's on drugs holding her tennis ball. Oh the entertainment she brings to us.

Well, those are the dogs. I promise I will write again soon!!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

They Said, I Said

So you all remember me telling you all about 5 important things to know about me, right? Right? I know you are ALL such AVID readers that you never would've missed out on this post. (But just in case you were on your death bed the day I posted that and didn't get a chance to read it, here it is. It simply explains a little about how I became hearing impaired.)


So, just tonight I was out in the kitchen singing my little heart out.

All of a sudden, I hear Brandon yell from the other room: "Those are NOT the lyrics."

So I decided to compile a whole list of words of lyrics that I know of that I have messed up on.

Enjoy... I have entitled it: They Said, I Said.

They said: “Oh I swear, the world better prepare, for when I'm a billionaire.”

I said: “Oh I swear, Happy the Bear!, for when I’m a billionaire.”

(Brandon says: “Happy the Bear? What does that have to do with being a billionaire?

Me: “You know, I was kinda wondering how that made sense…”

They said: “Hot like Mexico, Mexico.”

I said: “Hot like Master Kova, Master Kova.”

(Brandon says to me: “Who the crap is Master Kova? Do you even know what you are singing about??”)

They said: “Oh let’s do it! Oh let’s do it!”

I said: Ole do it! Ole do it!

(Brandon says: “We are not at a fiesta. They are not saying ‘Ole’!”)

They said: “You’re like a candy store, and I’m a toddler.”

I said: “You’re like a candy store, and I’m a condo!

(Brandon says: A condo? Really, you think she’s calling him a condo?

My response: Well, it’s not any better than calling him a toddler.

Brandon: You have a point.)

All I have to say is this: It is NOT my fault that I cant hear the lyrics right. I am half-deaf.

Therefore, you cannot judge me for ACTUALLY thinking my lyrics were the correct ones. Even if they don't make sense at all.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

How Do These Things Happen To Me

I come home from work today, and I notice that only one of the trash cans was emptied.

This is the second week in a row that my trash man has neglected to take all of the trash.

What is his problem? I really don’t know.

I think he is lazy, but whatever.


So I go to check out the trash bags to see what the problem is.

Oh crap.

One thing I DO actually know about the trash people is that they won’t take any garbage that isn’t contained in a garbage bag.

And people? Someone has placed several random items into my trashcan that is not my trash.


So I (still dressed in all of my working nice clothing) start to pull out items out of the trash.

Then, I stop.

Oh crap again.

I realize that someone has thrown…ahem….paraphernalia… into my trash can.


I run quickly back into the house and start to scrub my skin so hard that my skin almost falls off.

I then return, gloved and ready to go.

I pack up all of the “paraphernalia” into one bag.

Then? I realize that the existing bags that were already in the trash can need to be divided into smaller bags because apparently our trash man is a frail muscle-less man who cannot lift them.

OH wait, another crap.

This time? I discover that these bags? Are filled with cut grass. However, because we have two dogs when we cut the grass, dog poop residue is all over it.

And lucky for me, since the trash man hasn’t taken these bags for two weeks, the grass and poop has just been marinating. In the hot sun. And then it rained. And got hot again. And rained. And got hot again.

Getting the picture?

I open up one bag and my gag reflex is so strong that I almost puke on the sidewalk.

I bury my face into my shirt once I recover and go to work.

I have to SQQQQQUUUEEEZZZEEE all the water and poop out of the grass so it wont be so heavy.

And of course, I splash some on my toes.

And then? I splash some on my clothes.


At this point, I am furious. I am stomping and getting so mad that the neighbors probably think I have a mental problem, since no one else was there but me.

I drag the hose out to the front of the house when I FINALLY finish cleaning and separating the bags.

I then also show up with my disinfectant.

Now, I become the even-crazier neighbor by disinfecting and spraying off the entire sidewalk while mumbling to myself.

I finally finish and stalk back inside to scour my skin off. Even after 20 minutes of scouring? The smell was so pungent that it is stuck to me.

My husband walks into give me a hug and is immediately repulsed.

Excellent. I tell him what happened, and he is rolling on the ground.

I think he gets too much joy out of my misery. I ask him if it smelled outside too much.

He said ‘Well, it smells like diarrhea. Mixed with something kinda toxic, like ammonia.”

Great. Because people? What do they always tell you to do if you smell a strong smell of ammonia in your neighborhood? Call the cops. Because there’s probably a meth lab nearby.

Well, wouldn’t that just make this day complete?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Wrath of My Armpit

So you all remember my husband's post about me, right? If not, you can read it here.


I need your help.

That right armpit that is smelly is really taking over my life!

Why am I so suddenly obsessed with my armpits? I will tell you.

Recently, I switched to a natural deodorant aka a deodorant without aluminum in it. My mom has been telling me for years about the dangers of antiperspirants, but I have been ignoring her.

Well, since I recently switched, things have been mostly good.

The deodorant lasts for a few good hours.

But then, the smell starts to creep.

Of course, only from my right armpit, because apparently my left armpit has no scent while my left smells like peaches and sweat. I know, I know a delicious combination.

So what should I do, people?

Apply aluminum armpit-clogging deodorant to the right armpit, and let my left one be free?

See, I have a problem with that because my aunt had to get surgery because of the crazy backed-up state of her armpit after she used aluminum deodorant.

So clearly I don't want to go back to the un-natural deodorant. But am I supposed to walk around with one smelly armpit the rest of my life, while the other is free and breezy?

I need your advice, people!

I don't want to smell like peaches and sweat the rest of my life on my right side.

I guess until I find a solution, I will just hug people on the left side of my body and plaster my right armpit to my side.

So if you see me on the street and my arm looks like it has gone lame? Don't worry! It hasn't! I'm just attempting to hide my creepy smelly armpit from you.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Manna Monday

Welcome to another installment of Manna Monday...

When you think ‘servanthood’, what comes to mind?

For some, you might conjure up images of slaves, either past or present.

For others, you may think of being humble and putting others above yourself.

Of course, the type I want to talk about today is the latter.

Why am I focused on servanthood? Well, in short, my husband.

Now, I just have to take this moment to brag about my husband.

Within the last week, this is what he has done for me:

Scenario 1: I was exhausted from school and just feeling overwhelmed. I casually mentioned that I was too tired right then, but would cook later. He didn’t hesitate. He asked: “What would you like me to cook for dinner?”

Scenario 2: I had an urge to get a Panera piece of bread. I mention this offhandedly. Next thing I know, he is on his way to Panera with a piece of their bread just for me. When the first store didn’t have the bread? He went to another one.

Scenario 3: I complained that my back was sore from working out.

He massaged my neck and back as I peacefully fell asleep and felt all the stress of the day melt away.

So besides the fact that my husband is a.m.a.z.i.ng., why do I share this story?

Because he is an example of what I would like to be.

He is constantly amazing me in the ways in which he puts the needs of others above his own. In fact, this seems to be second nature to him.

Do I think this is because of coincidence?


Rather, I honestly believe it’s because he has chosen to make his relationship with Christ such that He is his best friend. From this? Flows a desire to care more about others than himself.

He purposefully chooses each day to become more and more humble, rarely demanding his own needs or rights.


He is a great example of a leader of our home and the way I wish to be.

Christ himself washed every single one of his disciples feet as an act of service.

Now, keep in mind that the disciples walking on dirt roads that probably were filled with horse feces (as their mode of transportation), while wearing open-toed sandals. AKA the disciples feet were disgusting.

And GOD Himself. Jesus Christ. Chose to humble himself. Instead of walking in the room and declaring : “I am God. Worship me”, he bent down low and took on the job of a servant.

Did he have every RIGHT to proclaim his Godhood and ask people to worship Him? Yes. But in that moment, did he?

Am I willing to take on the most disgusting role, or unpleasant role, just to serve someone?

Or a harder question, even when its not a huge sacrifice, am I willing to serve??

Think about it…

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Discounts are the Best!

I LOVE free stuff.


I might have an obsession.

I don’t even know where this obsession to collect free things began. Because people? I am NOT a stuff collector. In fact, I throw away things too often sometimes and then regret it when I realize I needed that later. But I just hate clutter, so it all goes in the trash.

So obviously my hyper-garbage-throwing-away personality contradicts my desire for free things.

Am I surprised? No. Often, I am a walking contradiction.


Back to my discussion of free things.

I am so obsessed that I will take almost anything that someone gives me.

For example, just the other day I was on my way to work. When I went through security, the security guard noticed the cup that I was carrying my milk in. It said “Free Masons.”

He gave me the strangest look, and then was like: “Free Masons? Where did you get that cup?”

I simply responded: “OH! I was at a fair and they had a booth and they were handing out free cups! I love free things!”

His voice then relaxed and I went inside while thinking to myself: “Now that was odd.”

So I get home, and put my cup in the sink from the day. I then ask Brandon: “Do you know what the Free Masons are?”

Do you know his response?

He said they’re a fraternity that operates semi cult-like.


So I’ve been out advertising a cult with my free cup.

Do you think this would make me throw the cup away? Nope. I still have it. I just don’t take it out in public anymore. After all, it was FREE. Duh.

Among other free crap that I get excited about? Anything.

About a month ago the “Teacher Store” as we call it, or more appropriately named United Art and Education ,was giving away scratch off tickets to that you could get discounts at the store.

Not only did I wake up Brandon at the butt crack of dawn, but drove there while speeding just so we could get there in time (remember that I am not the teacher. He is. But look who was excited about the sale….exactly.)

Once we got in the parking lot, I saw so many cars. I panicked!

“No! What if they run out of scratch off tickets??”

I squeal into the parking lot and tell Brandon to “MOVE!”

I then proceed to RUN across the parking lot to try to beat the other teachers to the door. Brandon walks leisurely behind me.

I make it to the door and realize that they still had like 100 scratch off tickets left.

What did I win off of my scratch off ticket? A recyclable grocery bag. Brandon? $5 off a purchase.

And do you know what he said to me: “So I bet this was worth all the running across the parking lot, huh?” with a smirk on his face.

Whatever, Brandon.

It was CRUCIAL to get the free things.

And who couldn’t use a good recyclable grocery bag:)…

Friday, August 20, 2010

Octopus Tentacles

Quote of the Day:

One of the kids that my husband teaches asks the following question:

Kid: "How many testicles does an octopus have?"

Brandon's response: "Uh, I think you mean tentacles."


I just thought you might enjoy a little humor on your Friday:):):)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Anytime Fitness, Here I Come

So as you all know, I am getting my masters, right?

And as you also know, I am partially killing myself in order to do it.

Unfortunately, some of what comes with the territory is the fact that I have NO time for myself.

This would include working out.

However, I have decided to cut out some other activities that I do in order to begin to make time for myself to work out again.

Back in college, I worked out 5 days a week. I was pretty darn fit if I do say so myself (with the exception of my freshman year, when I became a lard-ball and packed on 20 pounds. S.E.X.Y. I then realized that I could not just eat like a ravaged beast at all meals, and began looking normal again).


Then, after college, I got married. I didn’t work out QUITE as much, but still kept a pretty good routine.

Fast forward 2 years (starting a year ago) when I started my masters program.

The working out? COMPLETELY STOPPED.

Like, shamefully I have probably worked out a grand total of 20 times in an entire year. Wow. I can’t believe I just put that out on the web. BOO.

In case you didn’t catch it? In college? I used to work out 20x in a month. Shame.

Anyway. So even though my clothes have stayed the same size? The fitness? Gone. The muscles? Gone.

Oh sad day.

So what did I finally decide to do?

Work out! I am neglecting some of my other duties in order to work out. I am letting go of my perfectionist tendencies to try to get all ‘A’s and prioritizing my body instead.

And yesterday was the first day I had worked out in forever. Man, it felt good.

But today? I feel like a shark rammed his teeth into my butt, and a rhino decided to slam me in the stomach, while my arms feel pleasantly like an elephant decided to stomp on them.


I was babysitting ‘J’ tonight, and he wanted to sit down on the ground to play a game. As soon as I sat, I yelled “OwwwwwwwwwwWWWWWW.” He thought it was hilarious. So what did he do? As soon as I got up to leave and start cooking dinner, he started poking my freaking legs.

Wow. If you want to know how annoying a 9 year old can be? Just tell them about some pain you are experiencing. They will make sure to make it 10000x worse.

So I’m trying to cook while he is poking me in the legs, cracking up. So I send him to his room. The first chance he gets? He comes up to me and pokes me in the face. Why? Because I hate it. He goes back to his room. He comes out again and pokes my legs again.

I temporarily contemplate stomping on his toes just to see if it feels good. I, however, demonstrate restraint and do not. He is a lucky kid.

That time? He got sent to his room for much longer. And I threatened to take away his D.S. He stopped poking me from then on.

But my butt, legs, and arms? Still feel like crap.

Ahh the joys of being out of shape.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My Erratic Brain

Thank you all for putting up with my ranting yesterday. I really needed to get that out!

And in an update? When our faux child got home last night? We had a GREAT conversation. He agreed to the consequences that we were going to give him, and today when he left? He left a note where he was going.

Praise the Lord!

Anyway. Because I was busy being angry yesterday, I totally missed the fact that yesterday? Was the end of my competition with my husband. (Want to read about the competition? Click
here )

Technically, my husband conceded before the competition was even over, but here he is to officially concede. And for your reading pleasure, he felt the need to share with all of my readers how erratic my brain really is if you were going to follow me instead of him!:)


I've come to grips with my 8 followers compared to my wife's 23. So I figure if you can't beat 'em, join 'em.
But before you start reading her blog, maybe you should know how erratic she really is. Here are a few random quotes and scenarios that I've captured in the past week. Enjoy.

"Do you think it's possible to have one armpit smell worse than the other? Because I'm pretty sure my right armpit smells worse than my left."

"The little 12 year old girls watching America’s Got Talent will vote for the little 12 year old singer because I? Was 12 once."

"This one time at camp I had this crush on a camp counselor. I was 13 and he was 21. I thought he was going to wait for me."

"Eric, from CSI is hot. Don't you think so, honey?"

"This dog is so fat I can barely pick her up. Do you think she looks anorexic?"

"I'm probably going to have to wear a diaper when I'm pregnant. Because I have a really small bladder. And sometimes I pee a little bit already. Just imagine when I'm pregnant."

"Will you smell my armpit? I'm pretty sure it stinks"

"That dog farted and again and it smells like fish. Will you wash that dog's butt?"
Sometimes she talks in her sleep.. and this is what I wake up to.



"OOOOOOOUUUUUUCCCCCHHHH MY EYE!!" (that was me screaming when she punched me in the eye while she was asleep. Funny thing is... she didn't even wake up)

And this one is my all time favorite.

Elizabeth: Will you still love me even if I get to be 300 pounds?
Me: Yes
Elizabeth: What if I only had one arm and one leg?
Me: Yes
Elizabeth: Ooh I have a better idea. What if there was only half of me. So I only had one arm, one leg, half of a face,half of a body, AND I weighed 300 pounds. Then what?
Me: (no comment)

So now that you know a lot more about the true Elizabeth do you want to read her blog? ....

Probably ... this game sucks.

-Dirty Lenses

Don't believe anything he says! None of this is true! (Read: all of this is true, but I dont want to admit it...)

Monday, August 16, 2010

Manna Monday?

So it’s supposed to be Manna Monday, right? (Missed the first Manna Monday? Click here.) A.K.A. the time where I share what God is teaching me at the time.

So I thought and I thought, and I came up with nothing?

Maybe (and you will all have to excuse me) because I am BLINDED by my anger right now.

Remember our faux child? Also known as my brother-in-law who is living at my house right now. Who just so happens to be a teenager. Who is irresponsible and young.

I am not a patient woman. I wish I were, but I am not. All of the patience in my family is my husband’s. And his is wearing thin too.

We set out very simple rules for him to follow when he came to live with us.

We even had him sign a contract. Why?

Because the whole purpose of him coming was because he had been getting into a lot of trouble back home, so we figured if we offered our home up to him, it would be an opportunity for a fresh start. Since he had been in trouble in the past, we didn’t want to leave ourselves vunerable so we made a contract.


I DO applaud him for coming to live with us to begin with. At least he took the first step to change his life.

But people? I am so angry I literally feel like my whole body is on fire.

Simple rules are simple rules.

#1 Tell us where you are going and be back by 12:30 am.

Telling us where he is going helps keep him safe. And I personally think 12:30 am is pretty darn lenient if you ask me. Brandon and I both have jobs/school in the morning to go to so its not too much to ask him to be back by 12:30.

----Does he tell us where he is going? N.O. Despite numerous requests to do so, he still disappears. Without so much as a note.

----Does he come back by 12:30am? N.O. He blames it on his work schedule. But once? I caught him in a lie saying he was up at the basketball court even though earlier he said he was working.


#2 Do not take anything of ours without asking

-----Has he taken 4 different things within the past month? YES . Most recently? My husband’s $300 MP3 player.


#3 Pay rent

-----He has been here for a month. Not only has he not paid his security deposit, he has not paid his rent.


#4 Do not sneak in and out of our house

----On more than one occasion we have noticed a window being left open or a door being unlocked. Thanks, I really want my house to be burglarized. Thanks so much for leaving us all vulnerable. No really, I am so grateful.



I feel like I have totally lost my mind! To know me is to know that I am hard core. When I set rules? I am not joking. I really mean them.

But with our faux child? He is sooo sensitive and can go off in an instant, and even though I am furious with him for doing all of the above? I still love him and want him to be safe. The last thing I want is for him to blow up and leave and do something stupid.

I guess this is the same predicament all parents of teenagers have. You want to punish, but you realize they are part adult but at the same time still so very much a kid. You realize that if you push too hard they will disappear, but if you don’t set the boundaries they will walk all over you.

And people? I am NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT one to be walked all over. If anything? I can be way too harsh.


What’s that you say, Lord?

That I am a hypocrite?

The last thing I want right now is to be convicted.

Can’t I just be angry and hold a grudge? Just this once?


Even as I write this blog post, I realize I am in need of a change of heart.

Should I allow my brother in law to walk all over us? By no means. We have already brainstormed consequences for when he walks in the door tonight. And they WILL be implemented.

But when Peter came to Jesus himself and asked how many times should he forgive his ‘brother’ who sins against him and asks: “Should I forgive him seven times??”

What does Jesus reply? Not seven times, but seventy times seven. A.K.A. 490 times. A.K.A. Unlimited forgiveness, which is the same type of forgiveness that Jesus gives to us.

And WOW. I Know that I have just as many, if not more, sins that I have committed against other people.

I know that I am a hypocrite.

Even as I write this? The anger is dissipating as I allow the Truth to wash over me.

Yes he needs consequences, but more than that? He needs love and forgiveness. He needs to have a human experience of a Christ-like love that is so unconditional that it leads him to Christ himself.

If I, as a Christian (a representative of Christ’s name) is not acting like that same name I represent, how will the world… how will my brother-in-law see that the love of God is SO much better, bigger, and greater than any other love you will ever find.

And how will he thirst for a relationship with Jesus if he never sees how life-altering it can be?

Forgive me, Jesus.

And I guess this turned into a Manna Monday, afterall.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

No Need To Lie To Me

I’m just going to say it.

Newborns? They look like straight-up aliens.

Everyone and their mom (no pun originally intended, but then I thought it was funny, so I kept it. So, yep—pun intended) pretends like they’re cute, but everyone knows they are not.

Sure, the fact that they are teeny-tiny is cute.

Sure, the fact that they are so dependent on you to take care of them is cute.

And sure, the fact that they make baby sounds is cute.

But people? Newborns seriously look like some jacked aliens. Squinty eyes, wrinkly skin, wobbly necks, and bald heads does not equal a cute kid. It just doesn’t.

And you know it.

But can you tell the mom?

Nope. You have to pretend like : “Oh my goodnessss!!!! Look how cute your baby is!!! Wowwwwww!!!! AMAAZZZINGGGG! Awwww….”

Here’s the good news.

When I have kids?

There is no need to lie.

I am sure that I, like every other mom, will think that my kid is the cutest on earth. I will swoon, and be instantly in love.

But in the back of my mind? I will know that the world-at-large will think my kid looks like every other newborn-alien hybrid that has ever existed.

So instead?

Just tell me ‘congrats’ and ‘I bet you must be so happy.’

And I will be content with that. Because I realize that anything else would just be a lie.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Skiing Story II

(If you haven’t read part I, you should probably scroll one post down and read it first. Go ahead, I’ll wait.)

So like I was saying.

The skiing story from hell didn’t stop after that near-death experience.

The awesome designers of the slopes decided that they would make just one ski lift for 3 hills. Here is a visual to aid in the story:

So basically, we ride the chair lift back up to the top of the hill. Sarah (My sister) instructs me to go toward the right, so that we can go down an easier slope.

She, being the gracious and loving sister that she is (read: murderer that she is), allowed me to go first again. How kind.

So I veer to the right. I am all proud that I have cut across the mountain.

I am zigzagging all down the slope.


Oh $@!!$#!@!!!!!

I realize that I didn’t cut across the mountain far enough. As you can see from the picture above, hill two intersects back with hill one.

And then, I am filled with dread. I am headed back toward the black diamond.

My sister is behind me and notices my mistake. But I guess I can’t call her a total murderer, because she did follow me down the black diamond as well to make sure I didn’t break all ankles, knees, ribs, elbows, and shoulders of my body.

Soon, I am speeding just as fast as I was the last time!!!!

Holy crap!


Praise the Lord that He heard me. This time? I didn’t even crash at the bottom! Woo hoo!!!!!!

Sarah reaches me and in the midst of tears from laughing so hard says: “Why didn’t you go to the right?????”

I stare at her incredulously.

“I DID go RIGHT. You didn’t tell me HOW far right to go!”

So? You guessed it.

Up the frickin ski lift again.

This time? I am ADAMANT I am going to go all the way right to hill #3.

So, down we go again.

And I make it all the way right, alright.

All the way right, straight into a HUGE flow of ski traffic! I was screaming: “Get out of the way! I can’t stop! I’m coming right toward you!”

Expert 4-year old skiers look back with fear and panic as a huge white marshmallow flies toward them. Stupid expert 4 year old skiers.

Then? BAM! I crash into a HUGE, MONSTROUS mogul.

My skiis go flying and one of them smacks me straight on the forehead.

Simultaneously I hear a group of 10 guys yell “OOOWWWHHAAAHHHHHHH! That musta hurt! IS she OK? Hahahahahah!!!!!!!”

One of them was nice enough to come pick me and my disintegrated pride off the ground.

Here comes Sarah again, laughing her face off. Thanks Sarah, you’re a real help.

She tried to console me by telling me a story about her friend who went racing down a hill so fast she crashed into a tree. She had braces at the time and had to pick tree bark out of her braces for the next 2 days.

Well, I guess that made me feel a little better.

Not much. She still tried to kill me on 3 different occasions.

So maybe I don’t long that much for snow. Maybe summer can stay a little longer. Even if it is hot as crap outside.

Because people? I can NOT have another humiliating experience like that on the slopes again.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Skiing Story Part I

It is summer.

Yesterday? It was 95 degrees. The day before that? It was 100 degrees.

And I live in the Midwest, people. Where the humidity is so thick you walk outside and immediately have a mist covering your skin. AWESOME. LOVE IT.

All this heat has me looonnnggginnngggg for some cooler weather. I think some nice crisp snow would be nice right now….

Speaking of snow, I remember this one time, my sister Sarah and I went skiing in Michigan.

This was my first trip skiing outside of the great hills of Ohio, where I grew up (I know! You must be thinking: “MAN! I Have GOT to make it to Ohio to go skiing….I’ve heard they have some great slopes.”)

Needless to say, going to Michigan was going to be my first ‘real’ skiing experience on real hills in real snow.

SO, we went skiing. Now, I had forgotten at the time that my sister was part of a ski club in high school. So basically, every week during the winter, she would learn how to become some expert skier.

I? Was not part of that club. Before my Michigan skiing experience, I had been skiing a grand total of 5x. On those amazing Ohio slopes with fake snow.

We arrive at the resort, and we get warmed up for about 2 hours by going down some pretty easy slopes, having a great time. I had to remind myself how to ski. My sister? Did not.

However, after about 2 hours of this, we got bored. We wanted to try something more exciting.

My awesome sister suggested we go down the black diamond. For all of you people who have never been skiing? Black diamonds are generally the hardest to ski. They force you to zig zag across a mountain while avoiding trees on an extremely steep slope and just for fun? They throw in a few moguls (large purposefully-placed-there bumps on the slope).

YAY, right?

I am a moron.

I agree to go down the black diamond with my sister. Why? Because I am competitive. And if she is doing it? So am I.

So we get on the ski lift. On the way up, I am thinking: “WOW! This is a lot higher off the ground than I thought!” Do I say anything? Nope. I just keep on riding the lift.

We get to the top, and I then lose my balls. I start to freak out and tell Sarah that I cannot go down this mountain. I am going to die.

But the funny thing about skiing is that once you’re up there? There’s no way down. Why? Because that amazing ski lift doesn’t have a place at the top of the mountain to get back on. Only to get off.

C. R. A. P.

So now, I have to give myself a good kick in the rear. We start to near the edge, but because we are so high up, the wind is blowing furiously. We take a peek down and it is a straight drop off. No time to get used to being on the hill. You just drop straight down.

We both start to lose it (like are cracking up so hard because we both realize this is harder than anything either of us has ever done). But there’s no turning back now.

We scoot up close to the edge, and then WHAM! We both get shoved over, going extremely quickly!

Remember that strong wind I was telling you about? Yea….It sooo pushed us right off the edge and down that hill.

I am ahead of my sister, and at first, I’m doing great. I am focusing. I am zig zagging. I think to myself: “I can do this! Concentrate, Elizabeth.”

But then? As you can well imagine, the speed starts to pick up. I start going faster and faster, and no longer can I zig zag. I am now FLYING down the mountain so quickly that if I turn my skiis, I am afraid I am going to break my legs.

So what do I do? Start praying ferociously.


I couldn’t even pray anymore. I just started calling his name! I wanted to close my eyes, but knew if I did? I was going to crash into a tree.

Oh Lord, help me.

Meanwhile, my sister sees me flying down the mountain behind me….she is cracking up, all the while trying to focus on skiing so that she doesn’t die too.

Finally, we both get to the bottom of the hill. I did not die, but I did come crashing to the ground as soon as I was down there.

I look at my sister with a horrified face, and she just continues to crack up.


Thanks for the support, Sarah.

But guess what people? This skiing story from hell isn’t over yet.

However, you didn’t think you were going to get the rest of the story out of me THAT easy, did you?

Tune in tomorrow for part II of this crazy story. I promise, it is worth it.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Does It Really Matter?

I am selfish.

I know, I know. I am a CHRISTIAN. How can I be saying I’m selfish? I thought Christians were supposed to be perfect, right?


We are not perfect. Although our goal is to act like Christ did, we are still human, we are flawed and imperfect. The only difference between Christians and non-believers? We have chosen to put our trust and hope in Christ and believe in Him for salvation.

That is it.

Therefore, like I said: I. Am. Selfish.

Terribly so, in fact.

I really feel like I have been made so acutely aware of this lately, especially since my brother-in-law moved in. (Missed the post about that event? Click here. )

So often, I make declarations in my mind about my own rights and my stuff.

I think that my house is mine.

It is not.

I think my money is mine.

It is not.

I think that my time is mine.

It is not.

You see, because I have chosen to live my life for Christ, I recognize that all of my blessings, gifts, talents, and breaths here on this earth all belong to Him.

In fact, if the plan for my life was supposed to end right now, he could take the breath out of my body this very instant. He could make my heart stop beating. And my short life here on earth would end.

And all that time spent thinking about all MY ‘stuff’, MY ‘precious time’, and MY ‘precious belongings’ would fade in a moment of time.

Which really makes me wonder…why in the world am I so concerned with all of it anyway?

Will it really matter in the long run if someone disrespected my time and space? I mean, who really cares. If I am truly to love as Christ loves, then shouldn’t I be willing to give up my rights as he did? After all, he was treated terribly---mocked, scorned, and beaten, yet he gave up his life freely for every single one of us without complaint.

And I look at my own life. I can’t even stand it if someone oversteps their bounds or takes advantage of me.

I know what my purpose here on earth is. I discovered that at a young age. I remember thinking to myself: “I really want to help people who are hurting.” (Thus why I am a social worker!)

However, how much of my life is spent NOT working toward my purpose? How much energy and time is wasted wondering about stupid things like “I wish I could afford designer clothes like _____ over there” or “I wish I could change x, y, and z about my body” or even “I cannot believe ______ did that to me! Clearly they need to know about how they stomped on my toes.”

Which leads me back to my original point. I am selfish.

I spend so much time wondering about meaningless things because they benefit me.

How would my life be different if the majority of my thoughts were focused outward and how I could minister to others?

How much more Christ-like would I be?

Maybe then I could wear the name of Christ proudly instead of so often bringing shame to His name.

But thank God for grace.

Thank God He forgives us when we are wrong.

Thank God that He loves us so much that even when we are selfish and not resembling Jesus, He still loves us.

And thank God that He loves us enough not to let us stay the way we are.

Thank God.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Call Centers Are Just Awesome

I hate call centers.

I don’t hate the people who work in them, because I know that they are just trying to work at their job, but I really hate the centers.

Want to know what I hate even more?

Automated systems that you have to go through first to even get to the call center.

Want to read a recollection of my conversation today? Here it is, for your reading pleasure…

Robot man: “Hello! And thank you for calling [unnamed business]. Please say or enter your 16 digit account number.”

Me: “9999-9999-9999-9999” (you didn’t think I’d actually put a real account number on here, did you?)

Robotman: “Did you say: 9999-8888-3029-2000?”

Me: No.

Robotman: “Please say or re-enter your account number.”

Me: (Sllooowwwlllyyy) 9999-9999-9999-9999

Robotman: “I’m sorry, I didn’t catch that. Could you please enter your 16 digit account number.”

Me: “Oh my frick.”

Robotman: I’m sorry, I didn’t catch that. Could you please enter your 16 digit account number.”

Me: “ 9 - 9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9 -9”

Robotman: “Did you say 9999-9999-9999-9999?”

Me: Yes.

Robotman: “Ok, how can I help you today? You may say something like: “I need to pay my bill” or “I want internet services.”

Me: I want to talk to customer service.

Robotman: “No problem! I will transfer you to billing.”

Me: I did NOT say billing! I want to talk to customer service!!!!

Robotman: “I’m sorry, we are currently experiencing high call volumes right now. Your wait may be extraordinarily long so you should call back during Wednesday through Friday for assistance.”

Me (to myself since stupid Robotman can’t understand me anyway): I do NOT need help on Wednesday through Friday. I need help NOW. That is why I am calling NOW.

15 minutes later…

Actual human: “Hello, billing department! May I have your account number please?”

Me (thinking… “Don’t you already have that? Why did I have to tell the robot man my account number 50x if you weren’t going to use it???”) : Sure, it’s 9999-9999-9999-9999.

Actual person: “Ok, what can we do for you today?”

Me: I need to talk to customer service, but I got transferred to you instead.

Actual person: “Ok, no problem, let me transfer you there.”

15 minutes later…

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “Hello, customer service! May I have your account number please?”

Me: Sure, why not. 9999-9999-9999-9999

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “What can I help you with today?”

Me: What?

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “What can I help you with today?”

Me: Oh! What can you help me with today! Um, well, I need to change my services because I am being charged more than I am supposed to be charged.

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “I’m sorry, I couldn’t understand you.”

Me: What?

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “I’m sorry, I couldn’t understand what you said.”

Me: What?

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “Could you repeat that?”

Me: Sure. I need to change my services because I am being charged more than I am supposed to be charged.

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “Ok, no problem. Here are your options: sllskdjnifeofj slldkjiewow sowoeijfjfoeoeisjowijflfl.

Me: I’m sorry, I couldn’t understand what you said (as I laugh awkwardly because I’m not sure what to do at this point.)

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “OK, here are your options: slslslkekeejwjwjl slslkwkwjsflflkwjw wlwllkjfjfjkfkf

Me: Ok, thanks so much for your help! I think I’ll just call back later.

Heavily Accented Actual Person: “Ok thanks for calling [unnamed business].

Me: What?

And THAT, my friends, was the biggest waste of time of my life. I still haven’t found enough patience to call back yet.

I know it wasn’t the heavily accented person’s fault that I couldn’t understand them, and I know they just need a job just like anyone else who needs a job! But is it possible to provide them a job somewhere else in the company? Because people? On a customer service line? Individuals with accents that are strong enough that it impedes understanding are not very helpful if the customers you are trying to help do not understand them. Just sayin.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

My Bucket List

My mom is probably one of the coolest people you will ever meet. Here she is below with my sister and brother-in-law at my sister's wedding.

So why, you might ask, is she so cool?

Well just the other day, I get a call from her. She is on vacation in California right now, and do you know what she called to tell me?


My mother is 60 years old.

She is my hero.

When I am 60, you better believe I will be parasailling.

Hearing my mom's story, in fact, inspired me to write down all the things I hope to do before I kick the bucket.

So, lucky readers of mine, here it is. My bucket list:

1. Go parasailing, bungee jumping, sky diving, water skiing,

2. Have children with my husband

3. Foster and adopt children with my husband

4. Live in Africa

5. Stop biting my freaking nails

6. Write a book (About what? Who knows! But I want to do it anyway...)

7. Start a ministry with Brandon

8. Send all my kids to college

9. Sing with a choir of at least 500 people!

10. Touch an alligator

11. Touch a lion

12. Own a horse

13. Milk a cow

14. Travel to Italy

15. Travel to Israel

16. Live next door to my sister and mom again

17. Have grandchildren

18. Have great grandchildren

19. Drive a race car

20. Learn to ride a motorcycle

21. Improve the public school system

22. Improve the social welfare system

23. Have a healthier relationship with my father

24. Learn a third language

25. Make a cool invention

Well, I am sure there is more, but I will continue to add to this as time goes on (or cross things off as I accomplish them

What about you guys? What's on your bucket list? Leave me comments and let me know!

Google knows me!



So, today I was reading some other people’s blogs, and I noticed a common theme: Many of them kept talking about blogher.

Since I am new to the blogging community, I was totally confounded as to what in the freak all these people were referring to.

So many of my fellow bloggers were saying that they went to Blogher’10 and WOO HOO, it was going to be amazing.

Well, crap.

I needed to find out what this was.

Apparently, it’s some conference where all the women bloggers of the world go to learn about how to blog.

Well, I certainly could’ve benefited from THAT conference considering I am like a complete imbecile when it comes to blogging.

Basically, in case you haven’t figured this out yet, what you get on this blog is just some diarrhea of the mouth. Anything that I think gets exploded onto the page. Nice thought, huh?

Lucky for you.

Anyway. Back to my point.

This Blogher conference apparently gives some good pointers, right?

So I was reading one of the live updates of the conference on their website, and they mentioned that people search on Google to find blogs.

My interest was piqued.

So what did I do?

Googled myself.

AND GOOD NEWS! I was on the list of search links when you type in ‘Permanently at Lunch.’

My link of course was preceded by an article titled: “Are your employees permanently at lunch?” and some news about Pennsylvania approving school lunches permanently.

But people? I WAS THIRD!

Never have I been more proud.

Now, I’m not so sure anyone in the world will ever google the phrase “Permanently at Lunch”, but if they do? I am SOOOO going to pop right up!

YES! My dreams of becoming rich off this blog are coming true.

Now if I could only figure out HOW to make people google that phrase….

Saturday, August 7, 2010

I.R.N.B. Movement

Anyone who knows me well can tell you that I love pop culture.

I have no idea what my weird obsession is with celebrities and their lives, as well as the music which I mostly find totally meaningless, yet delightfully entertaining!

However, despite my love for pop culture, there are certain aspects about it that I just, for the life of me, can.not.understand.

For example, I’m listening to the radio the other day and Usher comes on. Now, I still remember back when Usher actually made semi-good love songs. Nowadays? Not so much.

Exhibit A:

I’m driving down the road, enjoying the nice summer day. For the most part, the lyrics on the radio are just floating past my ears, and not into my head.

But then the chorus comes on. All of a sudden, I tune in and these lyrics start to enter into my brain. And I find myself being serenaded by the most amazing and deep lyrics ever (read: the most disturbing lyrics I’ve ever allowed to enter my brain).

And I bet you’re wondering what this wonderfully deep and amazing chorus said, aren’t you?

Well, lucky for you, you don’t have to wonder. I (being so special and amazing myself) will share them with you now:

“You say Daddy's home, home for me
And I know you've been waiting for this loving all day
You know your daddy's home (daddy's home),
and it's time to play (so it's time to play)
So you ain't got to give my loving away
So all my ladies say hey hey .hey daddy
Hey hey .hey daddy
So all my ladies say hey hey .hey daddy
Hey hey .hey daddy”

UMMMMMM, can we say creepy?

I literally have been perplexed by this urban movement to call your significant other by the name ‘daddy’ for as long as it’s been a trend.

What happened to just calling someone ‘sweetheart’, ‘baby’, ‘lover’ even!!!??!! I mean, is that still an option?

But daddy?


I mean, if I picture calling my husband ‘daddy’?? I want to barf. 12 times. Maybe even more. Ugh. I am shuddering even thinking of it.

The only time I want to call my husband ‘daddy’ is when we have children and he is actually a daddy.

Otherwise? Sexually? That is the LAST thing I want to think about.

So therefore, if you are with me that this movement is extraordinarily creepy, then I think we should start our own movement. It will be called the “I-will-never-call-my-husband-‘daddy’” movement. But, that could be shortened easily to the “I’d-rather-not-barf” movement, or I.R.N.B.

Come on, people. I need support.

I’m sick of hearing about people ‘playing’ with their daddies in their bedrooms.

That is soooo wrong on soooo many levels.


Thursday, August 5, 2010

I got that Green Green

So, just the other day, I found out a shocking fact.

SHOCKING, people.

Like, I couldn’t believe my eyeballs.

So I bet you are dying to know what I found out.

Or, you really couldn’t give a crap and are only reading my blog out of sheer boredom.

I’m cool with that too.


I’m more positive that you are dying to find out.

This is what I found out: People out there in the blogging world are making d-i-n-e-r-o off of their blog!

For all of you non-Spanish speakers, that means people are making cheese, bread, dough, moo-lah, stacks, paper, a.k.a. MONEY.

When I found this out, I freaked the freak out!

WHAT??????? People are making MONEY just by WRITING?

WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE? And how in the world can I become one of them?

Then I found out: you have to advertise. Either by allowing Google to randomly put ads on your blog, or by recruiting businesses to advertise with you.


How in the world am I going to do that?

I still have no clue. I am all types of moronic when it comes to technology. The fact that I can even figure out how to type on this thing every week is a miracle within itself.

But people? You should not be shocked when you start to see ads pop up. I WILL figure this out and I will become RICH! With all 18 followers of mine.

I am SURE that my riches are going to abound.

Just you wait and see…

(P.S. As I was typing this blog and asking Brandon for other words for 'money', he gives a few and then mentions: "The Green Green." I am about to write that, and then he says: "Oh wait, I think that means weed."

Maybe I should start selling weed for money. I am sure that will be more profitable than writing a blog. I'm really going places, people.)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Never-Ending Birth Process

Although I’ve never had a baby, I imagine getting a masters is a lot like going into labor.

Long, intensive, awful labor.

Like, the type that you hear about and cringe. You know what I’m talking about. The 36 hour, sweat-inducing, back-breaking, I’m-going-to-die-if-this-baby-doesn’t-come-out-of-me labor.

Which is just all types of awesomeness.


So why would I compare my masters to this?

Well let me just give you a taste of what my schedule for the last two semesters have been, and maybe you will understand.


9am-2pm Work at my practicum (aka a full time job you don’t get paid a lick for---awesome!)

2pm-1000pm Work at my real job

1000pm-2:00 am Spend time with my husband and do homework


9am-430pm Go to school. Wait for my brain to explode.

430pm-930pm Work at my real job

930pm-200am Do homework and spend time with husband again


9am-3pm Work at my non-paying practicum again!

3pm-6pm clean house, cook dinner

6pm-12000 am spend time with husband…and you guessed it! MORE HOMEWORK!


9am-430pm Go to school. Pray I don’t die.

430pm-1000 pm Work at my real job

1000pm-200am Try to do homework and spend time with husband. Most likely, I am falling asleep at this point.


9am-5pm Work at the practicum where they use me shamelessly for free labor.

5pm-?? The first time all week I actually focus on my husband since I refuse to do homework on weekends


-do chores that are undone
-go to church
-try to spend time with friends and family, although the thought of doing ANYTHING is exhausting. Sigh.


So basically, in case you didn’t catch it, I am gone from 9am until 1000 pm every night. AKA a 13 work hour day. Every day. And go to bed around 2 am each morning. Awesome, right?

This is an example of my weekly labor process. The problem is? Unlike real childbirth, the labor never stops. Ever.

Hmmm…I might just die before I get this masters.

If I do die, you can sue Indiana University. Just tell them it’s all their fault. I’m sure you’ll win. It’s simple like that.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Helping Out Inner City Children

Hello faithful readers! Today, we have a special guest: Mr. Dirty Lenses from Perfect Eyesight Through Dirty Lenses is here to share a bit of his heart. Will you consider helping out his kids? They really are all worth it...

Well another school year is starting back up. This year, much like the last three years, I went out and bought school supplies for every student that I could possibly have in my classroom. Usually, I despise going school shopping because I hate fighting with soccer moms to get the last purple folder right before school starts. However, this year my wife insisted that I get everything on sale which required me to shop earlier than the last minute. Even with all the sales, I nearly spent $100 just on school supplies for my students.

Some of you may be thinking, “why can’t the students buy their own school supplies?” What some of you may not know is that I teach in the heart of the inner-city. Right smack dab downtown. 82% of the students in our school district live below the poverty level. The state average is somewhere around 35%.

The first day of school for these students isn’t like what I remember as a kid. They don’t come with their new school shoes, flashy backpack, new school clothes, and pride in what their parents bought them for lunch. Many of my students come with a school uniform shirt that was given to them by either a charity or an older sibling. That’s it.

I came back home devastated that I ended up spending that much money and still don’t have the materials to make my classroom theme. That’s when I decided that I need to apply to Donorschoose.org. This is an organization that allows teachers to place their school’s needs online and donors decide to give to these teachers to help fulfill their goal. But as I sat here, trying to plead my students’ case, I got stuck on two words: Donors choose.

Daily, I am frustrated with my students’ situations. How come they don’t get to choose? Did my fifth grader choose to get jumped after school because his dad is in a gang? Did my student choose to have a learning disability because she was born addicted to cocaine? Did my student choose to deal drugs and steal from the local ministry because neither of his guardians have a job and that’s the only way he could eat?

Donors choose. I remember going school shopping with all three of my siblings and $100 in my pocket. My parents gave us the choice pick our own clothes, shoes, and backpack. I remember being so happy on school shopping day. But why? How did I get this choice and my students don’t? What is so special about me that God blessed me with a choice?

If given the choice, my student would choose to be with her dad that’s in jail for robbing a gas station for food. My student would choose to be with her sisters that were moved to foster homes by Child Protective Services. My student would choose to learn without being distracted by thoughts of his parents beating him when he got home.

I get a choice to give a choice. We get a choice to give a choice. I can give a student a choice by providing the best education I can to each student. You can give a student a choice by giving. Please give to Donorschoose.org. Whether it’s for my classroom or another classroom, give these students the opportunity to live a life that they get to choose.

His students really have some unique challenges... If you want to give specifically to Mr. Dirty Lenses classroom, go here.

Manna Monday

So welcome to a segment I would like to call Manna Mondays. It is where I share some of what God is teaching me.

Last Sunday at church, our pastor really had a phenomenal sermon where I truly felt convicted and inspired. Hopefully you too will enjoy what he shared. Here were my notes:

It was entitled: “Full of God’s Purpose” and was based upon Ephesians 3:20.

Ephesians 3: 20 “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.”

#1. We are asking too small! We limit what God desires to do through our life because we are asking too small. Often times our prayers consist of “Lord, just help me get through this day.” Ok, well if He is a God who can do exceedingly more than that, but that is all we are asking??? What if we started to pray bigger dreams and more powerful prayers. For me, this might look like this:
-“Lord, bring me an opportunity to lead at least one person to Christ Every. Single. Day.” Or

-“Lord, will you raise up a revival in the United States so that the spirit of apathy and unbelief will be extinguished.”

-“Lord God, allow me to be your servant every day by sacrificing myself to bring glory to your name.”

- “Jesus, give me a heart for the nations. May I bring your gospel to nations that have never heard your name before.”

-“God, will you revive the inner cities of America! Empower me to meet the physical needs but to bring the message of salvation to those living there!”

-“Jesus, burn up everything unclean inside me. Make me into a new creation that looks more like YOU every day.”

#2 We think too small! This is among the same point. We envision the plan for our life as so insignificant in comparison to what He desires for us! After all, are we not here on this earth for HIS purpose???? We need to start dreaming bigger and allowing Him to lead us in the direction we need to go…

#3 God’s power is working in us as Christians because the Holy Spirit is alive on the inside. We must never forget that we are coming to the KING of kings! All power in all of the earth is His! However, God’s plan is possible only by the power of the Holy Spirit. We need to be willing to submit to that power.

#4God’s Plan is all for God’s glory. If we are to dream bigger, and ask bigger, we need to be increasingly aware that it is all for His glory that we do any of it! Allowing pride to creep in will surely stop us in our tracks. Instead, we need to start each day without putting ourselves first. We can never think that we deserve any glory---all glory belongs to Him because it was He who gave us talents, abilities, resources, etc.

Even as I type this sermon, I get convicted again. There is so much that I hope to do for Christ, but I need to start praying more radical prayers. My faith needs to grow exponentially! After all, if we ask, the door will be opened, if we are seeking, we will find, …we simply need to ask!